MORNINGSIDE - histo ... : a character-defining element of the Ranch homes located in Morningside is

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Transcript of MORNINGSIDE - histo ... : a character-defining element of the Ranch homes located in Morningside is

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    A BRIEF HISTORY OF MORNINGSIDE In 1922, a large, undeveloped bay front tract near Miami’s northern city limits was platted. Called Bay Shore at first,

    Morningside was subdivided by the Bay Shore Investment Company and was the first of three phases that would be

    developed by the company between 1922 and 1924.

    James H Nunnally, president of the Bay Shore Investment Company, envisioned Morningside as an exclusive residential

    community and planned for every modern convenience. In designing Morningside, the project architects and landscape

    designers adapted the best of the Garden City concept which had been developed by Ebenezer Howard in England, as well as

    contemporary American suburban planning concepts, to this bay front location. The intent was to create a small, satellite

    residential district, bonded by major streets, with the entire project area focused on abundant green spaces.

    At a time when many lots in other Miami subdivisions were being sold undeveloped and unimproved, Morningside was notable

    for its carefully conceived and executed plan for development.

    The exclusiveness of the area was also guaranteed by the deed restrictions that the developers attached to the sale of each

    lot; restrictions such as minimum construction price of each house, only single family detached houses were allowed, no

    duplexes, apartments, and hotels were permitted, and no building could be constructed of wood. Building setbacks and lot

    frontage were also controlled, and the developer required that all building plans be submitted to the company for approval prior

    to construction. Houses approved by the developer were primarily Mediterranean Revival in style, featuring Spanish, Moorish,

    or Italian architectural design elements.

    From its inception in 1922, Morningside has been home to many prominent and influential local residents such as James H.

    Nunnally, Paul Scott, Frank Wharton, Laura Cushman, William Welch, Sidney Meyer, and Harold Steward among others.14

    14 Taylor, Tulie W.; Eaton, Sarah. Bayshore Historic District Nomination for the National Register of Historic Places, 1992. DA05201.

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    Even though the District has a large variety of architectural styles

    examples, the most common are:


    General characteristics

    Generally two stories in height Asymmetrical plan Rough stucco exterior

    Roof Barrel tile roof (sometimes Cuban in

    origin) In some cases, there are compound roof designs of various heights and /or roof designs featuring more than one type of roof, for example: flat roof and side gable

    Overhanging eaves Windows & Doors

    Arched windows and doors (typically rounded arch, but at times can be pointed). Many occasions the arch of the window is achieved by square casement windows with a fanlight completing the arch. In other instances, the casement window is rounded.

    Prominence of the entrance

    The entrance (front door) is a highly important element in the overall design of the home. It can be given prominence by a decorative surround carved from natural limestone, a surround wrapped in tile, a rounded tower entrance, or it can be the central element in a loggia composed of rounded open arches.

    Wrought iron detailing (decorative gates, balconettes)

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    General characteristics

    Linear, angular composition emphasizing verticality Generally two stories in height Smooth stucco exterior

    Roof Commercial buildings have flat roofs; residential buildings tend not to incorporate this feature as frequently.

    Windows & Doors Character-defining elements—decorated iron screen doors with tropical motifs Metal casement windows replaced wood casements

    Stylized decoration around windows and doors (vertical fluting around doors very common and character defining)

    Prominence of the entrance

    Prominent entryway The use of glass block (often around entrance or to add light to interior stairways)

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    General characteristics Angularity of Art Deco replaced with a streamline, decidedly horizontal, emphasis evoking cars, ships, airplanes

    From one to two stories Rounded corners key feature in overall layout / plan, instead of a tower Roof

    Commercial buildings have flat roofs; residential buildings tend not to incorporate this feature as frequently. Roofs tend to be low-hipped with Spanish barrel tile

    Windows & Doors Character-defining elements—decorated iron screen doors with tropical motifs Metal casement windows replaced wood casements Corner windows Eyebrow canopies over windows and doors Circular and porthole windows Detailing

    Minimal detailing, iron scrollwork replaced with streamline metal designs and metal railings evocative of ships

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    General characteristics Extreme horizontality, plan making use of large front and side setbacks

    Large front set-back with prominent driveway for the automobile—prominent one or two car garage

    Always one story Sub-styles or themed styles, such as: modern, colonial revival, Spanish colonial, etc. Roof

    Low pitch hipped roof with overhanging eaves Roof Materials range from flat tiles, shingles, and Spanish tile, depending on the theme. Some homes may have flat and sloped, angular roofs

    Windows and Doors Covered entry porch-entrance not a key element in the design

    Emphasis on bringing the outdoors in utilizing large picture windows, expansive metal awning windows, and sliding glass doors

    Detailing Minimal detailing: stone or faux stone or brick facing on the front of the home

    Planters incorporated as part of the frontage, often treated with facing Detailing related to the theme of the home (i.e. faux shutters for colonial theme) Enclosures: Small courtyard or screening with decorative cast blocks in the front of the house balancing the use of large windows with the need for homeowner privacy.

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    An enclosure is any fence, gate, wall or hedge that fully or partially encloses property or otherwise obstructs the view of the

    house from the street. Enclosures are allowed along rear and side property lines up to eight feet (8’) in height. The height of

    all enclosures is measured from the ground up and includes decorative features.

    The intent of enclosure guidelines are to allow for the most important feature of the homes, their facades to be seen and

    appreciated from the public right-of-way.

    Enclosure materials

    Metal Picket

    . These fences are appropriate for all styles of homes and must be wrought iron, galvanized iron, or

    similar heavy metal. They must be a dark color, either dark green or black. No solid screening may be affixed to

    the metal pickets.


    If the wall has intermittent piers, metal picket grilles may be placed on top of the masonry walls between

    the piers. Any decorative scrollwork, metal pickets, or hedges placed above the masonry wall must conform to the

    height requirements.

    Solid wood

    . A solid wood fence may be used along side or rear property lines so long as it is NOT VISIBLE from

    the public right-of-way.

    Hedges. Hedges which are planted behind a metal picket or walls must still comply with the height regulations for

    enclosures. This includes any other materials that would create a visual screen. Creating a dense planting of trees

    or palms is considered a hedge and must conform to guidelines.

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    • Chain link

    . Chain link fence is not allowed on property lines which face a street, or project in front of a home’s

    façade. Chain link vinyl coated dark color is allowed on side property lines and rear if minimally visible from public


    Other enclosures

    . Other types of enclosures that are not specified are not permitted without HEPB approval.

    Front of home / on property line. Generally, enclosures may not be located in front of a main façade. An enclosure that

    extends from the side of the home (parallel to the street) must be set back one foot (1’) from the façade and must not exceed

    six feet (6’). If the enclosure extends ten feet (10’) from the façade along the side of the home, it may be a maximum of eight

    feet (8’) in height.

    Location of enclosure & specific height regulations for enclosures

    • Grandfathered conditions: Walls, chain link fences, or other landscaping features which were already in place during the time of Morningside’s designation (1984) are also considered “grandfathered” conditions and do not have to be removed. If these features are removed, any new enclosure must conform to the guidelines.

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